The biggest and most immediate element of the Escala to land in buyers' driveways will be the car's dramatic new styling. The concept sedan's look is a radical departure from Cadillac's current design and includes a healthier dose of Asian influences than the brand has featured in the past.
"The design language is the first thing" consumers will see, de Nysschen said. "Exterior design and interior design concepts are already being incorporated in the vehicles that are in development right now."
He estimated that production Cadillacs will arrive with this look in 2019. That would make the next-generation CTS sedan -- soon to be dubbed the CT5 -- the most likely candidate for the styling shift, followed closely by Cadillac's all-new XT7crossover. Both models are expected to go on sale in 2019.
Then there's the question of what to make of the Escala itself.
Production would be far more feasible than it was for the full-size Ciel convertible that debuted here in 2011 or the Elmiraj from 2013. The Escala is built on the CT6 platform but sits six inches longer overall.
While the CT6 is a standard sedan, the Escala -- Spanish for "scale" -- uses a liftback design.
In the press release announcing the Escala, de Nysschen hinted that the car could join the Cadillac lineup. "Depending on the development of market segment for large luxury sedans, Escala is a potential addition to our existing product plan," he said in the release.
If that happened, it would effectively take the place of the CT8 -- for now.